The U.S. Army has been issuing a number of contracts related to the Stryker family of armored vehicles lately. While DID doesn’t cover every one of these announcements, we thought we’d cover every announcement in September 2006, just to give our readers a kind of “fiscal year-end month in the life” flavor for what it takes to maintain the fleet.
The Stryker is known elsewhere as the General Dynamics MOWAG LAV III, in which capacity it serves with several western armies. The basic ICV armored personnel carrier chassis provides a base for a number of variants, from ambulance to mortar carrier to command and control to new variants like the M1128 Stryker Mobile Gun System pictured above, with its 105mm gun for direct fire support of infantry operations. While their tires put them at a disadvantage to tracks in terms of off-road possibilities and hence tactical movement options, the Strykers are well liked in the Iraqi theater despite the IED threat. In that theater, road patrols are a critical part of the military mission itself, and the CONOPS(Concept of Operations) emphasizes mobility from bases rather than alternative strategies like reinforced Roman-style checkpoints at regular intervals along key roads. The Styker ICV’s high tech electronics, high top speed, ability to put many miles on its odometer without creating major problems, and protection levels are well matched to this approach, which has led to very positive reviews from the field.